With 1,000 days to go until the opening ceremony of the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics, thoughts are turning to how the games can become a positive vehicle for change in a culture often averse to it.

Japan is a country with a wealth of accessibility-conscious infrastructure, with the great majority of train and metro stations easily navigable for wheelchair users and people with other disabilities. But culturally, there is a lot of work to be done, and some believe the Paralympics may prove a catalyst.

Hard infrastructure in Japan is "carefully considered" compared with foreign countries and the availability of elevators is "very high," said Toshiya Kakiuchi, 28, a wheelchair user who is an adviser to the Paralympic Support Center and president of Mirairo Inc., a company that specializes in creating universal designs in products and services.